I hope that my work will show effectively that the recorded history of humankind upon the earth is the direct result of the fallen condition of the human intellect. The work is a poetic thesis in which I attempt to demonstrate that this fallen condition is primordial and has existed throughout recorded history. The present human condition is seen as the fruit of what has been termed by Cardinal Newman “an aboriginal catastrophe”, depicted within conceptualized time as the fall of man. Without this catastrophe there would be no human history, a history of the power of death, which is the ultimate power of the negative in existence, the fruit of an act of murder, the killing of Abel by his blood brother, Cain. History is the history of this fruit. The archetypal stories in the Jewish scriptural canon will be seen to record this fall with astonishing psychological insight and I will use them in my poetic attempt to guide the unhindered soul into the consciousness of absolute being and the promise of eternal life.
As a Catholic philosopher I am constantly seeking the answer to the puzzle of my existence, an answer I can find only within my own consciousness. Through reflection on my own experiences of the universe in which I exist and the study of others’ reflections and experiences I draw a map of my actuality while seeking its relationship to an ultimate reality. The puzzle of why I exist supposes a knowledge of where I exist. The accumulation of knowledge of my environment is, therefore, a necessary step, but my goal is to understand. Discovering that, within the universe, all things are relative but that my own being is not relative, since thought follows being and I am before I think, I become a passionate searcher after the absolute and a seeker after wisdom, which cannot, I believe, be defined except by those who have gained it. Wisdom lies in immediate being and reflective thought is, therefore, a distraction. Herein lies a paradox, that an ultimate reality must be accepted, must be believed in, before it can be known. Faith in the absolute is an act of being. I therefore pursue in darkness a far light.
That far light is an image of both the beginning and the center of the physical universe in which I apparently exist, a light which has traveled from a seminal point in space and moment in time outward in every direction at an immense, yet relative, speed for millions upon millions of solar years to reach my observation, a solar year being an arbitrary measurement by an earthbound observer’s intellect of the time in which the earth completes one orbit around the sun, a relative moment of time. This light has then traveled past my outpost in the universe for millions upon millions more solar years, apparently gathering speed, until it has reached the outer limits of its expanding material domain and has either regained the material formlessness of energy with which it began its journey among the stars or has spiraled back into the formless, absolute void into which the physical universe is expanding.
Time and space are products of the rational human mind, conceptual artifacts inextricably intertwined within a reflective intellectual consciousness that embraces duality. These concepts are then projected as a repetition, a reflective actuality, upon a universe that can no longer be apprehended immediately but only reflectively. This loss of immediacy is precisely the fall from innocence. My existence is as a moment of consciousness within this projected actuality of space and time, this physical universe. I was conditioned, while young, to accept this reflective actuality as reality and then indoctrinated into a false value system which accepts only a rationalistic interpretation of events and sets me on a course of acquisition of material possessions. I am surrounded by form, which I perceive to be energy of decreasing velocity. This informs me that the material of the physical universe is in decay. Decadence, entropy, rules the physical universe! The possessions that I devote my life to gain today are worthless tomorrow. There are no absolutes within this universe, everything is relative, making it accessible to my reflective and rational mind, which is searching for, but cannot comprehend, the absolute.
The physical matter of the universe appears to be moving in two contradictory directions in time, both decreasing in speed as it’s energy decays, and increasing in velocity as it expands in space, which presents another paradox for me to attempt to understand. My bodily movement, too, slows as I age, yet my consciousness, building upon an ever increasing pool of experiential knowledge, increases in acuity. To confront this paradox requires wisdom, which I have yet to attain but which may now be partially defined as a qualitative increase in consciousness. An increase in knowledge without understanding does not give wisdom. Only a correct understanding of the knowledge that I have gained will make me wise and the acquisition of this understanding requires diligence over time, and patience.
The schools of learning in civilization, the academy and the university, do not teach wisdom or own wisdom, despite their claims, and, insofar as they are a part of the worldly establishment that founded them, they cannot ever possess wisdom. Since understanding is a prerequisite for obtaining wisdom, they reveal by their claim to authority and their service to those who hold power and who claim a larger authority, that they do not even possess understanding. There can be no legitimate authority, intellectual or otherwise, on the earth. Authority represents power and all power exhibited on the earth is merely the power of the negative in existence which is discovered by an intellectual reflection the use of which involves the loss of immediacy and innocence, thereby rendering the authority holders guilty. All power and authority have, as their base, the fear of the ultimate power of the negative in existence, which is death. Therefore, the knowledge that the academy and the university have gained and holds in trust of necessity becomes perverted in its application, destroying the natural world and filling the intellectual void with the works of progress, a euphemism for entropy. Always marching forward, to a dubious destination, these powers can never stand still. Always becoming objectively, they can never simply be subjectively. All such authority, power and progress may be seen as artificial constructions of the fallen human intellect.
The environment formed by civilization, an artificial actuality which a misnamed homo sapiens is constructing across the Earth over time, obfuscates human perceptions of reality and truth. Youthful minds are conditioned to accept this unnatural actuality as reality and are then indoctrinated into a set of false values which contain a misrepresentation of the world of phenomena. A materialistic and mechanistic worldview is foisted upon each budding consciousness as the only reality. Conformity to this worldview is rewarded while nonconformity is deemed eccentric and erratic. The laws that govern
societies are always framed to protect the interests of those who claim authority and exercise power over others, while the weak and the poor are fed from the scraps that fall from the tables of the greedy and the powerful. Men are encouraged, like Esau, to sell their birthrights for a bowl of soup.
Before the physical universe began to exist I surmise that there was only an infinite void, formless and empty, absolute and eternal, a great immaterial Zero. It is within this vast emptiness that the physical universe came to exist and and into which is expanding. The One, the universe, is an attempt to negate the Zero, the void, with something instead of nothing. But when the One appears and confronts the Zero the Universe of relativity is formed, a bubble within the Void. This universal bubble expands within the void but can never become absolute since everything within it is relative. It had a beginning in time so can never become eternal since it must also have an end, and it is finite so can never become infinite.
Whatever caused the material universe to exist must be extraneous to the universe, and the totality which is outside the universe is precisely the immaterial void into which the universe of form that confronts the conscious mind is expanding and which, I believe, is a spiritual and conscious being, infinite, absolute and eternal, present within the material universe as the soul of every individual being. It is the effort of human beings to fill this void without acknowledging its spiritual and conscious reality which leads to the development of the material civilization that is now spread, like an infectious scab, across the earth.
The soul of each man and woman may be defined as a single moment of the eternal consciousness of the void, the spiritual void of absolute being, a moment that can freely choose to be determined spiritually or materially, as being or as existing, as a moment of eternity or as a moment of time. When the soul moves to express its self as a moment of time it falls from being into existing, from unity into duality, from absolute into relative, from the infinitude of the spiritual void into the finitude of the material universe.
The highest work of the individual soul within the universe is to express in consciousness its own absolute being, a transcendent being of the absolute, subjecting its own existence to the reality of being. The physical universe now appears to human consciousness as an expression in lower dimensions of the higher dimensions of being and a consciousness of the absolute is the highest form of consciousness, revealed as transcendent to the physical universe and thereby infinite and eternal. The seed of consciousness implanted in the universe transcends the physical limitations of form that delineate existence and which is passed on through generation. The expansion of consciousness becomes the direction of the evolution of life within the universe.
Increased consciousness is not therefore a means to an end but an end in and of itself. It is not to be achieved in order to manipulate the physical universe, but in order to transcend the physical universe. That universe has a beginning and therefore will have an ending; everything within it is relative. It is finite and temporal and designed to decay. All movement in time and space is the movement of decay, time being most precisely defined as the measure of entropy. Absolute consciousness, on the other hand, the consciousness of absolute being is infinite and eternal and so is not subject to the great law of physical entropy. It is transcendent to the limitations of relativity and to their rational interpretation. The innumerable forms of philosophy and the rationality of logic, however, capture the fallen intellect in their nets and hinder it from acquiring knowledge of the absolute categories, bringing the mind into the bondage of rationality subject to the ills of the flesh. In this light, the limitation of dialectic is obvious, although the dialectical method can bring us to the borders of the absolute, which can be comprehended only by a transcendent, spiritual consciousness of faith in an absolute being.